Today was the first day of my new job. I’ve posted before about how I felt different about this change of job, as I already knew the people and what was going on at the company, however that really didn’t prepare me for actually being there.
I spent 45 minutes on a bus getting to work. Most people I’ve told this to think that this is an outrageous time to spend on a bus, but compared to the length of commute I regularly made in London, it’s actually quite reasonable. I’m also in the enviable position of having the beginning and the end of my commute be the terminals of the bus route. In other words, I’m pretty much guaranteed a seat.
I settled in, fired up the BBC Radio 4 News Quiz podcast, and enjoyed the ride. I spent much of the time watching San Francisco roll by, and tried my hardest to remember each intersection and my impressions of them to report back once I got home. It’s important to get a good sense of a place when you’re looking for an apartment to live in, and you want to pick the right area.
Once I was at work, I picked up my new pass and waited for orientation to begin. Orientation was much as I expected: Lots of paperwork, a couple of videos that appear to be selling the company to you, when you’ve already signed up for the job, and an attempt to remember every little thing I’ve worked on in my own time to declare as a past invention. The last bit always takes the most time. It was fun to see the videos that I last saw a year and a bit ago when I started in Singapore. Having actually been there and seen it for myself, and worked with the people in the video, I can say that they really need to update the video as the studio has grown dramatically.
A very quick introduction from the IT Service Desk, and it was time for lunch with my new peers. This is always a fun time for a new hire; the people you’re having lunch with are on a free lunch, as are you. And contrary to the popularly held belief, the lunch really is free. For that hour, a new hire will find themselves the most popular member of the team. Hopefully that popularity will continue for some, but it’s certain for the initial lunch.
The food at the Presidio Dining Commons is fairly legendary, as far as work canteens go. It’s an old mess hall, and is furnished in dark wood with beautiful views of the Presidio park and the Palace of Fine Arts. The food itself is fresh, with a selection of salads and sushi to simpler fare such as pizza and burgers. I opted for a rustic-looking veggie burger with a fruit salad on the side. I expected it to be a light lunch, but it knocked me out for the afternoon.
Fortunately, the afternoon consisted of me clearing out three weeks of email from Singapore (my account had been moved over and I’m still on all of the old mailing lists) and ensuring that I had all of the software that I need. A very slow introduction to the job.
Tomorrow, I have a morning of benefits orientation and timecard training, which is sure to be as exciting as it sounds, and then I have to round out the paperwork with an application for a social security number. I should actually start doing some work on Wednesday, and I cannot wait. I’ve been off work for three weeks, which has been great to clear my head of all of the old stuff, but now I have a void which needs filling. I’m dying to get my coding teeth into some new tasks and a new project, and start to find my place in the team.
All in all, today was a little underwhelming. I’m not sure what I expected, certainly not to be dropped in at the deep end, but right now I just feel exhausted. I’m putting this down to being out of shape. Much like an athlete who takes a break and then finds they can’t work out as hard as they could previously, and not that I know that much about that, I feel like my work muscles have wasted away a little. I’m just not used to being in an office environment, and the number of small conversations and interactions that I had today seem to have taken their toll.
At least I should sleep well tonight.